The Austin Chronicle

Tea Party Wins Big in Run-Offs

By Brandon Watson, May 30, 2014, News

In Texas at least, rumors of the death of the Tea Party have been greatly exaggerated. In the May 27 run-offs, Tea Party-affiliated challengers handily beat establishment GOP candidates. According to Texas Democratic Party Communications Director Emmanuel Garcia, the results were an indication of how far-right the Texas Republican Party has turned. "The Tea Party is the Republican Party," he said in a release.

In the lieutenant governor's race, Sen. Dan Patrick trounced incumbent Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, likely ending Dewhurst's 15-year political career. Tea Party affiliation was enough to to secure Ken Paxton the attorney general nomination, despite Dan Branch's hammering on Paxton's legal and ethical lapses.

Meanwhile, Democrats rejected upstarts in their own party. Dallas investor David Alameel, whom the Texas Democratic Party took the rare step of directly endorsing, stomped LaRouche-ite Kesha Rogers to become the U.S. Senate nominee. Name recognition did not help Richard "Kinky" Friedman in his bid to become ag commissioner; in a statement, Friedman said, "The time just wasn't right" in Texas for a campaign focused on marijuana decriminalization and hemp legalization. Rookie Jim Hogan defeated Friedman in the run-off, despite not running a formal campaign.

Election Results

Democratic Run-off

U.S. Senate Travis County State Totals
David Alameel 13,423 (86%) 145,039 (72%)
Kesha Rogers 2,124 (14%) 55,953 (28%)
Agriculture Commissioner
Jim Hogan 7,743 (51%) 105,763 (54%)
Kinky Friedman 7,564 (49%) 91,154 (46%)

Republican Run-off

Lt. Governor Travis County State Totals
Dan Patrick 9,701 (43%) 487,829 (65%)
David Dewhurst 12,821 (57%) 262,086 (35%)
Attorney General
Ken Paxton 10,446 (48%) 466,224 (64%)
Dan Branch 11,529 (52%) 266,539 (36%)
Agriculture Commissioner
Sid Miller 10,100 (51%) 362,573 (53%)
Tommy Merritt 9,654 (49%) 320,434 (47%)
Railroad Commissioner
Ryan Sitton 11,087 (55%) 398,652 (57%)
Wayne Christian 9,128 (45%) 297,654 (43%)

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